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Changes in Universal Credit

At Worthing Homes, we stand with residents in addressing a significant concern surrounding Universal Credit calculations during years with 53 weeks.

The current Universal Credit system calculates payments based on a 52-week rent year. However, in financial years with 53 weeks (which happens every five to six years) residents making weekly rent payments and in receipt of Universal Credit will find themselves underpaid by one week. This is purely because of the way Universal Credit has been set up and has nothing to do with the rent due or the resident’s ability to pay it. The upcoming financial year 2024/25 is one such year where UC recipients will be out of pocket.

We’ve taken inspiration from Curo and in response reached out to our local MP’s calling on them to raise this issue in Parliament. Sarah Murphy, our new Head of Customer Services, is leading the initiative and has confirmed one of our local MP’s has already agreed to raise this issue with the DWP.

Worthing Homes actively supports the National Housing Federation‘s call to the government for legislative changes aiming to ensure that residents on Universal Credit aren’t burdened with an extra week’s rent payment. The financial challenges this poses for our residents during a period of economic strain and high anxiety are a significant concern. At Worthing Homes, we want to put our residents first and have urged our MPs to do the same by challenging the DWP on the current set up.

You can also join the initiative by writing to your local MP – find out how to contact them here: https://orlo.uk/xSLPj

You can also find a handy template letter from the NHF here: https://orlo.uk/YI9bG